James Van Praagh.
Van Praagh is one of the most popular mediums in the world. He's recorded his experiences in his best-selling books, made frequent talk show appearances, and hosted his own talk show. As a child, Van Praagh had a tremendous fascination with death. His ability to communicate with the dead arose as the result of an astonishing encounter he describes as occurring when he was eight years old. He says he was praying to God to reveal Himself when an open hand appeared through the ceiling of his room, emitting radiant beams of light. "I wasn't scared. It was actually very peaceful," he says. Eventually, he began doing psychic readings for friends. As opposed to disquieting or frightening encounters with the dead, Van Praagh describes this communication as natural, even easy-going, and claims to feel the emotions and personalities of the deceased.